Sufjan Stevens says performing at 2018 Oscars was “traumatising”

He described the ceremony as "a horrifying Scientology end-of-year prom" in a new interview

Sufjan Stevens has spoken about his experience of performing at the 2018 Oscars, calling it “traumatising”.

The indie musician was invited to perform at the Hollywood awards ceremony after his song ‘Mystery Of Love’ – written for the Call Me By Your Name soundtrack – was nominated for Best Original Song.

“Honestly, one of the most traumatising experiences of my entire life,” Stevens said when asked about the event in an interview with the Guardian. He went to describe at as “a horrifying Scientology end-of-year-prom” that represented “everything I hate about America and popular culture”.


The star continued to say that he had no desire to be a part of “that world and that culture”. “I don’t want to be part of any room full of adults hemming and hawing over plastic trophies,” he said.

Stevens released his latest album ‘The Ascension’ today (September 25) – his first since 2015’s ‘Carrie & Lowell’. In a four-star review, NME said: “At its core, ‘The Ascension’ is a pop album, coupling catchy hooks with glittering production and deriving inspiration from some of the ‛80s biggest pop hits.

“The world is pretty shitty at the moment and it’s easy to feel helpless, but as the horror show that is 2020 continues to rumble on, ‘The Ascension’ is yet another ample soundtrack to rage-dance to.”

Last month, Stevens shared a video for ‘The Ascension’ track ‘Video Game’ starring TikToker Jalaiah Harmon, who is known for creating the ‘Renegade’ dance. Harmon choreographed the moves in the video, saying doing so made her “a little nervous in the beginning”.